Alexander Payne (Sideways) has signed on to direct the family dramedy The Descendants for Fox Searchlight.

According to Variety, Payne will begin filming in Hawaii at the end of the year or early 2010. The project isn't yet cast.

The filmmaker is in the midst of polishing Nat Faxon and Jim Rash's script, adapted from Kaui Hart Hemmings' debut novel of the same name.

Set in Hawaii, The Descendants tells the story of a wealthy landowner who takes his two daughters on a search for his wife's lover in the hopes of keeping his family together.